SLS

Looking down from the top of the Vertical Assembly Center at NASA Michoud Assembly Facility.

Nasa Rocket Factory

In 2018, I was given the rare opportunity by NASA take photos inside their Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, Louisiana. NASA MAF is home to the assembly of the Space Launch System rocket being built to send the Orion Spacecraft into space. The Artemis 1 mission was successfully completed on December 11th, 2022 after being launched 25 days earlier on November 16th. Artemis II is scheduled to be the firest manned mission that will send four astronauts on a lunar flyby for 21 days. The current launch date is November 2024.

The Forward Skirt is part of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS). Housing flight computers, cameras and avionics it is pretty much the brain of the rocket. This photo was taken a couple weeks after it’s final assembly was completed at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility. It will be used in Exploration Mission-1, launching from the Kennedy Space Center in June 2020. 

#5 in the following NASA Infographic: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/multimedia/infographics/corestage101.html
Space Launch System: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/index.html

SLS Forward Skirt at NASA Michoud Assembly Facility

The Forward Skirt is part of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS). Housing flight computers, cameras and avionics it is pretty much the brain of the rocket. This photo was taken a couple weeks after it’s final assembly was completed at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility. It will be used in Exploration Mission-1, launching from the Kennedy Space Center in June 2020.

#5 in the following NASA Infographic: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/multimedia/infographics/corestage101.html
Space Launch System: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/index.html

Nasa's Pegasus barge that will carry fuel tanks for the Space Launch System to other NASA facilities for testing and launches.

More Info:
NASA Infographic: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/multimedia/barge-pegasus-infographic
Pegasus Barge Fact Sheet: https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/atoms/files/sls_pegasus_fact_sheet_508_final_04212017.pdf

On NASA’s Pegasus Barge

Nasa’s Pegasus barge that will carry fuel tanks for the Space Launch System to other NASA facilities for testing and launches.

More Info:
NASA Infographic: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/multimedia/barge-pegasus-infographic
Pegasus Barge Fact Sheet: https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/atoms/files/sls_pegasus_fact_sheet_508_final_04212017.pdf

Inside the Vertical Weld Center. The friction-stir-weld tool for wet and dry structures on the Space Launch System (SLS) core stage. It will weld barrel panels together to produce whole barrels for the two pressurized tanks, the intertank, the forward skirt and the aft engine section.

More Info: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/

Inside the Vertical Weld Center at NASA Michoud Assembly Facilit

Inside the Vertical Weld Center. The friction-stir-weld tool for wet and dry structures on the Space Launch System (SLS) core stage. It will weld barrel panels together to produce whole barrels for the two pressurized tanks, the intertank, the forward skirt and the aft engine section.

More Info: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/sls/

Space hardware that will launch with Artemis I on Monday August 29th, 2022. The mission is the first planned launch of the Artemis space program that hopes to bring people back to the moon.

As of March 2024 the launch date is planned for September 2024. It’ll be the first crewed mission of the Orion Spacecraft and will do a moon flyby. It’ll be the first crew to travel beyond low orbit earth since 1972.

NASA SA Cone Spacecraft Adapter Cone

Space hardware that will launch with Artemis I on Monday August 29th, 2022. The mission is the first planned launch of the Artemis space program that hopes to bring people back to the moon.

As of March 2024 the launch date is planned for September 2024. It’ll be the first crewed mission of the Orion Spacecraft and will do a moon flyby. It’ll be the first crew to travel beyond low orbit earth since 1972.