Several articles have appeared over the last day covering the possibly imminent announcement of the final (finally!) configuration of the Space Launch System (SLS), which NASA has been studying since October 2010.
NASA Spaceflight is carrying an article about the SLS being a Shuttle derived vehicle. Managers Preparing For July 8 SLS Announcement After SD HLV Victory
Coverage of the SLS announcement also comes from Aviation Week & Space Technology.
NASA Will Compete Space Launch System Boosters
New Orleans City Business is reporting that Boeing is awaiting an announcement on SLS as it readies to hire at Michoud, where the Shuttle External Tank was made and where the new core booster of the SLS will be manufactured. Boeing Waits On Nasa Decision To Boost Michoud Work Force
Space News is reporting that the SLS would initially fly with Shuttle Derived 5 segment solid rocket motors (SRM’s), originally developed for the Ares I first-stage, while competition is underway for liquid side-mounted boosters. NASA’s Heavy-lift Launcher Would First Fly With Solid Rocket Boosters
From Space Policy Online comes news that on Tuesday (6/14) 7 Republican members of the House of Representatives wrote a letter to NASA Administrator Bolden demanding that NASA stop slow-rolling the SLS configuration. This mirrors frustration on the Senate side of NASA’s slow going on the SLS. Republican Lawmakers Criticize NASA’s Lack of Compliance with Law