Rocket part ferried on the Mississippi River

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) – It was a Mardi Gras-style celebration as a recently completed key component of a new rocket system was loaded on a Mississippi River barge in New Orleans.

The core stage of a rocket for NASA’s new Space Launch System is being floated upriver to the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi for testing.

Hundreds of NASA and Boeing workers wore colorful beads and marched to a brass band Wednesday behind the core stage as it was moved like a giant parade float.

The stage is part of a rocket for the Artemis program, aimed at returning U.S. astronauts to the moon.

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