Space

Path to the Pad: NASA Artemis I Moon Rocket Comes Together

Artemis I Moon Rocket Assembly Infographic

Credit: NASA

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket is on its path to the pad for Artemis I, the first integrated mission of SLS and NASA’s Orion spacecraft through the agency’s Artemis program. Before it launches from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the agency’s Exploration Ground Systems (EGS) and Jacobs teams at the spaceport stack the different elements of the SLS rocket on top of the mobile launcher inside the iconic Vehicle Assembly Building. So large that it’s a Florida Space Coast landmark, the VAB as well as the mobile launcher have been specially outfitted to accommodate SLS and Orion. Once fully assembled, the upgraded crawler-transporter will carry the skyscraper-sized duo to the launch pad for NASA’s next-generation Moon missions.

With the Artemis program, NASA will land the first woman and the first person of color on the Moon and establish sustainable exploration in preparation for missions to Mars. SLS and NASA’s Orion spacecraft, along with the commercial human landing system and the Gateway in orbit around the Moon, are NASA’s backbone for deep space exploration. SLS is the only rocket that can send Orion, astronauts, and supplies to the Moon in a single mission.

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