A total of 10 parts will form the dual missile boosters before its first launch, which is expected to take place next year.
The rocket is a key part of NASA’s Artemis Lunar Exploration Program, which aims to send the first woman and next man to the moon by 2024. NASA officials also hope that the SLS will be used to reach Mars and other “deep space destinations”.
Once fully assembled, NASA said that the SLS missile will stand taller than the Statue of Liberty and have 15% more thrust upon takeoff compared to the Saturn V missiles that supported the Apollo missions. 50 years ago, making it the most powerful rocket ever built.
“The stacking of the first piece of the SLS missile on the mobile launcher marks a milestone in the Artemis program,” Andrew Schropple, director of integrated operations flow with Jacobs, a company that works with NASA on the Artemis program, said in a NASA press release. .
“It shows that the mission is already taking shape and will soon be heading to the launch pad.”
Artemis is named after the Greek moon goddess and is the twin sister of Apollo.