Press Release by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and LED-On Tuesday, April 27, the largest rocket element NASA has ever built-the core stage of the Space Launch System (SLS)-arrived at Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida on NASA’s Pegasus. Pegasus is the barge used to ship the SLS from Louisiana to Florida. NASA has for decades used barges to move its large spaceflight structures. Pegasus was specially designed and built in 1999 to transport the giant external tanks of the space shuttles from the Louisiana shore to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on the eastern coast of Florida-a 900 mile journey that includes both inland and open-ocean waterways.
On Thursday, April 29 at 8 AM CDT, the core stage was off-loaded from Pegasus and moved to KSC’s Vehicle Assembly Building to begin integration with key launch components to include the solid rocket boosters and the Orion capsule.
To celebrate this historic event, Jody Singer, Center Director at Marshall Space Flight Center, shares a personal message thanking the dedicated workforce, stakeholders and partners across the nation for helping Marshall make human space exploration possible. View Jody’s message here.
Under 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 is the world’s most powerful rocket and the only rocket capable of sending Orion, astronauts, and supplies to the Moon in a single mission.
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Thank you for supporting NASA missions, and the SLS program.
Louisiana can take great pride in our special role in taking American back to the moon and beyond!