All Classic Video - Space Launch System (2011) - NASA
Space Launch System (2011) - NASA
NASA is ready to move forward with the development of the Space Launch System -- an advanced heavy-lift launch vehicle that will provide an entirely new national capability for human exploration beyond Earth's orbit.
Launch System (SLS) is a United States Space Shuttle-derived heavy expendable launch vehicle being designed by NASA. It follows the cancellation of the Constellation program, and is to replace the retired Space Shuttle. The NASA Authorization Act of 2010 envisions the transformation of the Constellation program's Ares I and Ares V vehicle designs into a single launch vehicle usable for both crew and cargo, very similar to the Ares IV.
The SLS launch vehicle is to be upgraded over time with more powerful versions. Its initial Block 1 version is to lift a payload of 70 metric tons to low Earth orbit (LEO), which will be increased with the debut of Block 1B and the Exploration Upper Stage. Block 2 will replace the initial Shuttle-derived boosters with advanced boosters and is planned to have a LEO capability of more than 130 metric tons to meet the congressional requirement; this would make the SLS the most capable heavy lift vehicle ever built.