Second SLS Qualification Booster Test Fire Scheduled for June 28

A full-scale, test version of the booster for NASA’s new rocket, the Space Launch System, will fire up for the second of two qualification ground tests June 28 at prime contractor Orbital ATK’s test facility in Promontory, Utah. Photo Credit: Orbital ATK

The solid rocket booster that will propel NASA’s skyscraper-size, 300-plus-foot-tall Space Launch […]

First SLS Flight Engine Roars to Life for Testing at Stennis Space Center

The first SLS flight engine roared to life for testing at Stennis Space Center on March 10, 2016. Intended for the first crewed SLS mission, EM-2, the engine last saw action powering Space Shuttle Endeavor into orbit in 2011 on STS-134. Photo Credit: NASA

The first of 14 former space shuttle main engines, now […]

NASA Shows Off Orion EM-1 Structure at KSC for Inaugural SLS Lunar Flight Test

The Orion pressure vessel for the EM-1 mission currently sits upon an upgraded test stand inside Operations & Checkout Building at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Photo Credit: Talia Landman / AmericaSpace.com

NASA’s Orion crew module pressure vessel is secured on a test stand called “the birdcage” inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and […]

NASA Announces Payloads for First SLS Mission

An SLS in its Block 1 configuration goes up, up, and away in this artist’s rendering. Image Credit: NASA/MSFC

It may still be almost three years into the future, but the maiden voyage of NASA’s gigantic Space Launch System (SLS) booster—destined to carry humans beyond low-Earth orbit for the first time in five decades—drew […]

Super Guppy Delivers Orion EM-1 Structure to KSC for 2018 Inaugural SLS Flight

The structure of the first Orion spacecraft destined to fly atop NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket in late 2018 on Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1) arrived at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida Feb. 1, 2016. Photo Credit: Alan Walters / AmericaSpace

The Orion spacecraft destined to fly atop NASA’s Space Launch System […]

First SLS Work Platform Installed in KSC's Vehicle Assembly Building High Bay 3

From NASA: “Inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the 325-ton crane lifts the first half of the K-level work platforms up for installation in High Bay 3 on Dec. 22. The platform will be secured into position on tower E, about 86 feet above the floor.” Photo Credit: […]

One Year After EFT-1: What's Been Learned, What's Ahead for NASA's Orion in 2016

It’s been one year since the successful Orion Exploration Flight Test-1, and in the time since NASA and Lockheed Martin have learned quite a bit about how their capsule flies in space and have begun applying those lessons to the actual spacecraft that will fly beyond the moon in 2018 on the first launch […]

NASA Contracts With Aerojet Rocketdyne to Restart RS-25 Engine Production for SLS

The opening salvo of four Space Launch System (SLS) flights, beginning with Exploration Mission (EM)-1 in November 2018, will contain a core stage powered by four clustered RS-25D engines. Image Credit: NASA

More than four years since three of its kind were last fired in anger, on 8 July 2011, to deliver Atlantis’ STS-135 […]

Orion Heat Shield Receives Upgrade, Ahead of EM-1 Mission

Returning from lunar distance, the Thermal Protection System (TPS) of Orion’s Crew Module (CM) is expected to endure markedly higher temperatures than those experienced by returning shuttles. Image Credit: NASA

Nearly 12 months since it embarked on its long-awaited Exploration Flight Test (EFT)-1 mission—which accomplished the farthest distance ever attained from the Home Planet […]

NASA Seeks American Industry Ideas on Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission Spacecraft Design

Artist’s concept of NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission capturing an asteroid boulder before redirecting it to an astronaut-accessible orbit around Earth’s moon.Caption and Credits: NASA

NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) plans to send a robotic spacecraft to a near-Earth asteroid to pluck a boulder off the surface and move it into a stable orbit […]