SLS might be in ... more trouble


I consider this rumor. But it’s from Scott Manley so I consider it slightly more credible than your typical rumor.


I’ve suspected that we’d get 4 block 1 launches (just enough to use up all the stored space shuttle main engines) followed by program termination for a long time now.


All I want is Europa Clipper to launch on it. That’s it.


Unrelated to current topic. Jared, would it be possible for you guys to assign a number to each of your Patreon donors that also shows up before their name on screen. That way when paused (or not) it would easier to find No. 54 (for ex.) instead of hunting all over the screen for a name. Just a thought.


The Delta IV was used for the first test flight of the Orion way back in 2015. Why not use it for crewed Orion flights? At least let’s get it in space where we can do “shake down” flights.


I’m sure I saw somewhere that NASA won’t human rate the Delta IV due to the flames that go up the outside of the first stage at ignition.


the report itself

The report found that NASA will need to spend an additional $1.2 billion, on top of its existing $6.2 billion contract for the core stages of the first two SLS rockets, to reach a maiden launch date of June 2020. NASA originally planned to launch the SLS rocket on its maiden flight in November 2017.




To dream is easy, to dare to do is hard and worthwhile.


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Didn’t see this in here, but the NASA OIG report on SLS dropped a week or two after Scott Manley wrote this.

Full report:


I’m not really sad about this rumour (or news if it turns out to be true). The SLS is simply a costly dinosaur compared to the New Space Revolution of high-tech, reusability and dramatic cost-decrease spearheaded by Space X, Blue Origin, Rocketlab, etc.

I just hope NASA finally gets its act together in the manned space flight department and finally sets daring goals again and provides the means and drive to actually achieve them (in a reasonable time too).

Off to the moon again and on to Mars…!

To stay and colonize.

(Thanks to the Commercial Crew Development program)


Oh my.

NASA is building a giant rocket ship to return astronauts to the moon and, eventually, ferry the first crews to and from Mars.

But agency leaders are already contemplating the retirement of the Space Launch System (SLS), as the towering and yet-to-fly government rocket is called, and the Orion space capsule that’ll ride on top.

NASA is anticipating the emergence of two reusable, and presumably more affordable, mega-rockets that private aerospace companies are creating.

“I think our view is that if those commercial capabilities come online, we will eventually retire the government system, and just move to a buying launch capacity on those [rockets],” Stephen Jurczyk, NASA’s associate administrator, told Business Insider at The Economist Space Summit on November 1.


BREMEN, Germany — With NASA’s decision to continue using an interim upper stage for additional flights of the Space Launch System, Boeing is working on changes to both that stage and a more powerful upper stage.

In an Oct. 3 call with reporters, John Shannon, vice president and program manager for the Space Launch System at Boeing, said NASA has asked Boeing to look at changes to the Exploration Upper Stage (EUS) to improve its performance.

Those changes were prompted by the decision NASA made earlier this year to delay the introduction of the EUS. That stage was originally planned to enter use with the second SLS mission, Exploration Mission (EM) 2. Instead, the first flight of what’s known as the Block 1B configuration of SLS has been delayed to the fourth SLS launch, likely no earlier than 2024.


In my opinion… what NASA should be doing… and what Congress should be funding… is development of the Payloads to go on top of heavy lift rockets and let Commercial businesses build whatever they want to loft the mass of those payloads.

At the end of the Day… NASA does what they are directed to do by Congress… who hasn’t had a clear idea what to do since Apollo…


Sounds like a good idea to let the Commercial businesses actually get something flying before totally cancelling the SLS, just in case they run into problems.

On the other hand, freeing up all the expertise from a go-no-where program could benefit the private companies with new hires.