NASA’s Space Launch System: New look, same great ability to enable human exploration of deep space!
Who knew signing some paperwork could be so exciting?
Already in 2015, the Space Launch System team has done things like successfully fired an incredibly powerful qualification test version of the solid rocket boosters, completed an entire series of full-duration tests of a RS-25 core stage engine, built a structural test article of the first flight’s upper stage and filled a factory floor with 50 barrels, rings and domes, all 27.6 feet around, all waiting to be stacked into sections of the core stage.
And, amidst all the smoke and fire and bending giant pieces of metal, there was the Critical Design Review. While it may not have generated the exciting pictures and video those other milestones did, the Space Launch System CDR is a huge step forward and one for the history books – the first CDR of a NASA crew launch vehicle since the space shuttle almost 40 years ago.
The design documents for a rocket are incredibly complicated, and the CDR process is an incredibly complicated review of an incredibly complicated design. Two teams – one chartered by the SLS program ...