Space

August 2, 2013

NASA’s Space Launch System completes preliminary design review

NASA has achieved a major milestone in its effort to build the nation’s next heavy-lift launch vehicle by successfully completing the Space Launch System preliminary design review.

Senior experts and engineers from across the agency concluded Wednesday the design, associated production and ground support plans for the SLS heavy-lift rocket are technically and programmatically capable of fulfilling the launch vehicle’s mission objectives. NASA is developing the SLS and Orion spacecraft to provide an entirely new capability for human exploration beyond low-Earth orbit, with the flexibility to launch spacecraft for crew and cargo missions, including to an asteroid and Mars.

“The review had to be incredibly detailed, so our plans for vehicle integration, flight software, test, verification and operations will result in a safe, affordable and sustainable vehicle design,” said Todd May, manager of the SLS Program at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

This review concludes the initial design and technology development phase. The next milestone in the continuing verification process is Key Decision Point-C, in which NASA will grant the program authority to move from formulation to implementation.

“The agency not only reviews the program internally, but also seeks help from many external sources,” said LeRoy Cain, head of the independent standing review board for SLS. “There are several external NASA stakeholders and organizations — including Congress, the Office of Management and Budget, and the public — who require a thorough, truly independent look at these programs as they transition through their lifecycle.”

People from across the country, including experts on 11 different review teams, participated in the design review process, which included analysis of approximately 200 documents and 15 terabytes of data. NASA’s industry partners – Boeing of Chicago, ATK of Brigham City, Utah, and Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, Calif. – also contributed to this successful checkpoint, and will continue to work to meet all program milestones.

In July 2012, the SLS Program completed a combined system requirements review and system definition review, which set requirements of the overall launch vehicle system. That successful completion confirmed the SLS was ready to move from concept to design. All element-level preliminary design reviews for the SLS core stage, boosters, engines and spacecraft and payload integration have been completed successfully.

“In two short years from the first announcement of the Space Launch System, we are at a milestone that validates the detailed design and integration of the system,” said Dan Dumbacher, deputy associate administrator for the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate. “You can feel the momentum of the workforce as we produce test hardware today. We are creating a national capability, and we will get this country, and the world, exploring deep space.”

The initial 70-metric-ton version of SLS will stand 321 feet tall, provide 8.4 million pounds of thrust at liftoff, and carry 154,000 pounds of payload. The rocket is scheduled for its first mission, Exploration Mission 1, in 2017 at which time it will launch an uncrewed Orion spacecraft. The mission’s goal is to demonstrate the integrated system performance of the SLS rocket and spacecraft before a crewed flight in 2021.

The SLS will be modified from the 70-metric-ton version† into the most powerful rocket ever built, a 130-metric-ton version, which will be capable of lifting 286,000 pounds. NASA plans to engage industry peers to further refine the 130-metric-ton design to support any destination, any payload and any mission to deep space.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines December 22, 2014

News: Report: DOD bomb hunters pried into U.S. firms, citizens - During some of the bloodiest days of U.S. combat in Afghanistan and the roadside bomb threat there, the Pentagon’s Joint IED Defeat Organization “improperly collected” intelligence on U.S. citizens and corporations to try to stem the threat, a Pentagon Inspector General report has found.  ...
 
 

News Briefs December 22, 2014

U.K., Canadian military leaves to join Ebola fight Reservists and troops from Britain and Canada have left for Sierra Leone to help in the battle to contain the Ebola virus outbreak. British officials said Dec. 20 that 16 reservists and 100 regular military personnel left on a morning flight from the Brize Norton military airbase....
 
 
Boeing photograph

Boeing, Malaysia Airlines celebrate 100th 737 delivery

Boeing photograph Boeing and Malaysia Airlines celebrated the direct delivery of the airline’s 100th 737 aircraft at an event in Seattle. Shown here Aminuddin Zakaria, senior vice president, airline engineering group, Malaysi...
 

 

Navy helicopter crashes in Kuwait; all crewmembers ok

A U.S. Navy MH-60S helicopter assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 26 (HSC 26) crashed at 11:22 a.m., EST, Dec.21, while on an overland training flight at Camp Buehring, Kuwait. All six personnel aboard the helicopter survived the crash and were transported to nearby medical facilities for evaluation. Three of the six crewmembers sustained minor...
 
 

AMC relocates KC-135 simulator

As Air Mobility Command fields the KC-46A Pegasus, displaced KC-135 Stratotanker pilot simulators will be relocated across the Total Force to maximize simulator access across the mobility enterprise. As a result, AMC, in coordination with the Air National Guard, recently identified four KC-135 pilot flight simulators and one KC-135 Boom Operator Weapons System Trainer to...
 
 

SpaceX completes first milestone for Commercial Crew Transportation System

NASA has approved the completion of SpaceX’s first milestone in the company’s path toward launching crews to the International Space Station from U.S. soil under a Commercial Crew Transportation Capability contract with the agency. During the Certification Baseline Review, SpaceX described its current design baseline including how the company plans to manufacture its Crew Dragon spacecraft...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>