As NASA’s SLS Heavy Lift launch Vehicle (HLV) heads for its Preliminary Design Review (PDR), NASA engineers are reported to be considering changing the engines used for the upper stage of the vehicle.
Tag Archives | SLS
The Mobile Launcher (ML) which had been built provide services to the planned Ares V launch vehicle of Project Constellation will not go to waste despite the cancellation of that programme. It will now be used to carry the heavy lift SLS (Space Launch System) to its launch pad (39B) at the Kennedy Sapce Center.
NASA has selected the rocket engine manufacturer Aerojet to take part in the risk reduction effort to provide advanced booster concepts for later versions of the Space Launch System (SLS). The $23.3 million contract has been awarded to allow Aerojet to reduce the technical risk in providing a liquid oxygen and kerosene oxidizer-rich staged-combustion engine. The company will fabricate a representative full-scale 550,000lb thrust class main injector and thrust chamber, and prepare to conduct a number of tests measuring performance and demonstrating combustion stability previously reported to be as part of its efforts to produce a dual combustion chamber engine of 1 million lb thrust called AJ-1-E6.
NASA has released Schlieren photographs of a supersonic wind tunnel test of a scale test model of the initial 70 tonne capable Block 1 configuration of the Space Launch System (SLS), The tests have been taking place in the Trisonic wind tunnel at the NASA Marshall Spaceflight Center. The Schlieren imaging system allows shadows to be cast by changes in refractive indexes caused by density gradients in a fluid to be projected and imaged. It is usually used to check aircraft and launch vehicle configurations for shock interactions and air flow instabilities at various attitudes.
In its quest to pursue manned space exploration to the Moon, asteroids and onwards to Mars, NASA began its Space Launch System programme. While the initial Block 1 SLS will be able to carry 70 tonnes to orbit, it was realised that at least 130 tonnes may be needed for actual manned exploration mission architectures. As such NASA intends to field later versions of the SLS using a pair of advanced boosters, more powerful than the initial SLS Block 1 version’s five segment solid rocket boosters currently made by ATK which were derived from Space Shuttle technology.
The Space Launch System (SLS) rocket that NASA hopes to send its astronauts to the Moon, asteroids and even Mars with, could soon be getting a new high thrust engine as part of its booster configuration. In fact, the engine may not be new at all. This was after Dynetics and Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne (PWR) announced its partnership to off the Apollo era Saturn V F-1 rocket engine for the competition which initially involves bidding for a NASA risk reduction analysis contract.
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