Humans to Mars? Why not another Moon landing or exploration, drilling on the Moon?
NASA new mega-rocket, a towering booster designed for deep space missions, will be ready for its first test flight no later than November 2018, space agency officials announced Wednesday (Aug. 27).
It's possible that the Space Launch System rocket test flight could launch as early as December 2017, but NASA officials have committed to having the rocket ready for flight be the end of 2018 to be safe. That extra wiggle room should let the space agency cope with scheduling and funding issues as they crop up in the future, NASA officials said in a teleconference with reporters.
The SLS will be the largest rocket ever constructed and it is designed to send humans deeper into space than ever before. The huge launcher — which will stand at 400-feet-tall (122 meters) in its final configuration — could deliver NASA astronauts to an asteroid and even Mars sometime in the future.