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NASA orders more SLS Rocket Engines for Artemis Missions to the Moon

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA has awarded a contract to Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, California, to manufacture 18 additional Space Launch System (SLS) RS-25 rocket engines to support Artemis missions to the Moon.

The follow-on contract to produce 18 engines is valued at $1.79 billion. This includes labor to build and test the engines, produce tooling and support SLS flights powered by the engines. This modifies the initial contract awarded in November 2015 to recertify and produce six new RS-25 engines and brings the total contract value to almost $3.5 billion with a period of performance through September 30th, 2029, and a total of 24 engines to support as many as six additional SLS flights.

NASA has awarded a contract to Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, California, to manufacture 18 additional Space Launch System (SLS) RS-25 rocket engines to support Artemis missions to the Moon. The four RS-25 engines, shown here, are attached to the SLS core stage that will send the Artemis I mission to the Moon. Currently, the stage is undergoing a series of Green Run tests in a test stand at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.  (NASA/Jude Guidry)

NASA has awarded a contract to Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, California, to manufacture 18 additional Space Launch System (SLS) RS-25 rocket engines to support Artemis missions to the Moon. The four RS-25 engines, shown here, are attached to the SLS core stage that will send the Artemis I mission to the Moon. Currently, the stage is undergoing a series of Green Run tests in a test stand at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. (NASA/Jude Guidry)

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NASA reports All Four Engines Are Attached to the SLS Core Stage for Artemis I Mission

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – All four RS-25 engines were structurally mated to the core stage for NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket for Artemis I, the first mission of SLS and NASA’s Orion spacecraft. To complete assembly of the rocket stage, engineers and technicians are now integrating the propulsion and electrical systems within the structure.

The completed core stage with all four RS-25 engines attached is the largest rocket stage NASA has built since the Saturn V stages for the Apollo Program that first sent Americans to the Moon.

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket now has all four RS-25 engines were mated to the core stage. (Eric Bordelon, NASA)

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket now has all four RS-25 engines were mated to the core stage. (Eric Bordelon, NASA)

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NASA successfully tests RS-25 engines that will power Space Launch System rockets

 

NASA Stennis Space Center 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationBay St. Louis, MS – NASA is a step closer to returning astronauts to the Moon in the next five years following a successful engine test on Thursday at NASA’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The latest “hot fire” was the culmination of four-plus years of testing for the RS-25 engines that will send the first four Space Launch System (SLS) rockets into space.

“This completes four years of focused work by an exceptional Stennis test team,” Stennis Director Rick Gilbrech said. “It represents yet another chapter in Stennis’ long history of testing leadership and excellence in support of this nation’s space exploration efforts. Everyone involved should feel proud of their work and contributions.”

NASA conducts a test of RS-25 flight engine No. 2062 on April 4th on the A-1 Test Stand at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, MS. The test marked a major milestone in NASA’s march forward to Moon missions. All 16 RS-25 engines that will help power the first four flights of NASA’s new Space Launch System rocket now have been tested. (NASA/SSC)

NASA conducts a test of RS-25 flight engine No. 2062 on April 4th on the A-1 Test Stand at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, MS. The test marked a major milestone in NASA’s march forward to Moon missions. All 16 RS-25 engines that will help power the first four flights of NASA’s new Space Launch System rocket now have been tested. (NASA/SSC)

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NASA completes Second RS-25 Engine Hot Fire Test of 2018

 

NASA Headquarters

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA followed up the first RS-25 test of 2018 with a second hot fire of the Space Launch System (SLS) engine on February 1st at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The full-duration, 365-second certification test of another RS-25 engine flight controller on the A-1 Test Stand at Stennis comes about two weeks after a January 16th hot fire.

The test marks completion of green run testing for all four of the new RS-25 engine flight controllers needed for the second flight of NASA’s SLS rocket. NASA is building SLS to send humans to such deep-space destinations as the moon and Mars.

NASA preforms second hot fire of the Space Launch System (SLS) engine on February 1st at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. (NASA)

NASA preforms second hot fire of the Space Launch System (SLS) engine on February 1st at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. (NASA)

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NASA Engineers successfully use 3-D Printed Part on RS-25 Rocket Engine

 

NASA Headquarters

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – Engineers successfully hot-fire tested an RS-25 rocket engine with a large 3-D printed part for the first time on December 13th, marking a key step toward reducing costs for future engines that power NASA’s new heavy-lift rocket, the Space Launch System.

During flight, a rocket may experience powerful up-and-down vibrations mainly due to the engines and propellant in the feed lines. This is called the pogo effect and is similar to the up-and-down motion of bouncing on a pogo stick. The 3-D printed part tested, called the pogo accumulator, is a beachball-sized piece of hardware that acts as a shock absorber by regulating liquid oxygen movement in the engine to prevent the vibrations that can destabilize a rocket’s flight.

The successful hot-fire test of an RS-25 development engine at NASA's Stennis Space Center on Dec. 13 included NASA's largest 3-D printed rocket engine component to date, the pogo accumulator assembly. The test was the first of 50 for NASA's restart of RS-25 engine production. (NASA/Stennis)

The successful hot-fire test of an RS-25 development engine at NASA’s Stennis Space Center on Dec. 13 included NASA’s largest 3-D printed rocket engine component to date, the pogo accumulator assembly. The test was the first of 50 for NASA’s restart of RS-25 engine production. (NASA/Stennis)

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NASA advances Exploration Objectives in 2016

 

Written by Bob Jacobs / Allard Beutel
NASA Headquarters

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – In 2016, NASA drove advances in technology, science, aeronautics and space exploration that enhanced the world’s knowledge, innovation, and stewardship of Earth.

“This past year marked record-breaking progress in our exploration objectives,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. “We advanced the capabilities we’ll need to travel farther into the solar system while increasing observations of our home and the universe, learning more about how to continuously live and work in space, and, of course, inspiring the next generation of leaders to take up our Journey to Mars and make their own discoveries.”

This illustration depicts NASA's Juno spacecraft at Jupiter, with its solar arrays and main antenna pointed toward the distant sun and Earth. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

This illustration depicts NASA’s Juno spacecraft at Jupiter, with its solar arrays and main antenna pointed toward the distant sun and Earth. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Space Launch System rocket’s upper stage engine packs a punch

 

Written by Kim Henry
NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationHuntsville, AL – The thundering roar of a rocket leaving the launch pad is a familiar sight. Much less familiar is the job of the smaller upper stage engines that do their job mostly beyond eye and camera range, but give spacecraft the big, in-space push they need to venture into deep space.

NASA’s new rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS), will rely on a proven upper stage engine – the RL10 – for its first mission with the agency’s Orion spacecraft in late 2018. The SLS Block 1 rocket will use one RL10B-2 engine, the same engine currently used by the Delta IV rocket, as a part of the interim cryogenic propulsion stage (ICPS).

An expanded view of the Block IB configuration of NASA's Space Launch System rocket, including the four RL10 engines. (NASA)

An expanded view of the Block IB configuration of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket, including the four RL10 engines. (NASA)

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NASA looks to use New Material to boost power in Spacecraft Nuclear Cells

 

Written by Elizabeth Landau
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – No extension cord is long enough to reach another planet, and there’s no spacecraft charging station along the way. That’s why researchers are hard at work on ways to make spacecraft power systems more efficient, resilient and long-lasting.

“NASA needs reliable long-term power systems to advance exploration of the solar system,” said Jean-Pierre Fleurial, supervisor for the thermal energy conversion research and advancement group at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California. “This is particularly important for the outer planets, where the intensity of sunlight is only a few percent as strong as it is in Earth orbit.”

Samad Firdosy, a materials engineer at JPL, holds a thermoelectric module made of four thermocouples, which are devices that help turn heat into electricity. Thermocouples are used in household heating applications, as well as power systems for spacecraft. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Samad Firdosy, a materials engineer at JPL, holds a thermoelectric module made of four thermocouples, which are devices that help turn heat into electricity. Thermocouples are used in household heating applications, as well as power systems for spacecraft. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA conducts successful test of RS-25 Rocket Engine to be used for Journey to Mars

 

NASA’s Stennis Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationBay St. Louis, MS – NASA engineers successfully conducted a development test of the RS-25 rocket engine Thursday, August 18th at NASA’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The RS-25 will help power the core stage of the agency’s new Space Launch System (SLS) rocket for the journey to Mars.

A variety of NASA officials and contractor representatives, as well as social and traditional media members, gathered to watch the 420-second test of RS-25 engine No. 0528. NASA is developing the SLS to send humans further into deep space than they have ever traveled, including on the journey to Mars.

On Thursday, August 18th, NASA tested the RS-25 rocket engine. The rocket will be the core power for NASA's Space Launch System for the Journey to Mars. (NASA)

On Thursday, August 18th, NASA tested the RS-25 rocket engine. The rocket will be the core power for NASA’s Space Launch System for the Journey to Mars. (NASA)

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