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Rocketology: NASA’s Space Launch System

Just What Is An SLS, Anyway?

16 Jul 2015, 14:15 UTC
Just What Is An SLS, Anyway?
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

For those lucky enough to be at or near Kennedy Space Center when a Space Launch System rocket leaves Earth for the first time, it will be an unforgettable experience.
Any rocket launch is amazing to witness in person, but the rise of a truly powerful launch vehicle, like the space shuttle or the Saturn V, is a different thing altogether. It’s not merely impressive; it’s visceral. It’s not something you witness; it’s something you experience, a brightness that seems like the sky has split open, a sound that you hear with your entire body, a power that passes into and through you.
The first SLS will push off the launch pad with more force than either the Saturn rockets are space shuttle.
And for all the reasons that shuttle and Saturn V launches were in a different class, that first launch of SLS will be unprecedented; the power emanating from the vehicle, through the air and ground and into its audience measurably greater than either of those forbearers.
That unparalleled power will initiate an unparalleled mission – propelling the Orion spacecraft behind the moon, farther than any Apollo capsule ever ventured, proving that the system is ready to allow ...

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