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  • Building the Future of Human Spaceflight Beyond Earth

    NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) provides a critical heavy-lift capability, powering people and cargo beyond our moon and into deep space. SLS launches larger payloads farther in our solar system, faster than ever before possible. It will be the most powerful rocket ever built, enabling diverse exploration, science and security missions. Boeing is the prime contractor for the design, development, test and production of the launch vehicle cryogenic stages, as well as development of the avionics suite.

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    Progress

    Technical Specifications

    Length 212 ft (64.6 m)
    Diameter 27.6 ft (8.4 m)
    Empty Weight 188,000 lbs (85,275 kg)
    Material Aluminum 2219
    Engines 4 RS-25
    Thrust per Engine 512,000 lbs (232,242 kg)
    Max Power Level 109% of rated thrust
    Fuel Liquid hydrogen
    Oxidizer Liquid oxygen

    Feature Stories

    Stacking NASA’s Giant Rocket

    Stacking NASA’s Giant Rocket

    February 7, 2019 in Space

    Boeing employees at NASA’s Michoud facility complete a forward join on the SLS rocket core stage.

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    Rocket testing lifts off at NASA Marshall

    Rocket testing lifts off at NASA Marshall

    January 23, 2019 in Space

    The liquid hydrogen tank for Space Launch System is lifted in place in preparation for testing.

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    Committed to the Core

    Committed to the Core

    August 6, 2018 in Space

    Testing, installation and integration of the Space Launch System core stage is underway.

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    Monumental Journey

    Monumental Journey

    December 2, 2016 in Space

    Space Launch System employees move closer to completing core stage of world’s most powerful rocket.

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    Far Out

    Far Out

    February 3, 2014 in Space

    Boeing's next big adventures into deep space ride with new super rocket.

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    The Path to Mars: Deep Space Mission

    The Path to Mars: Deep Space Mission

    December 4, 2014 in Innovation, Space

    NASA is setting its eyes on the exploration of Mars, an over two year-long journey that will make history. Today's children will be the first explorers of our neighboring planet with help from Boeing technology to discover ground humans humans have yet to see.

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    The Rocket Makers

    The Rocket Makers

    November 19, 2014 in Space

    With cutting-edge technology, Boeing employees once again are helping build a mighty rocket.

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    Space Launch System

    38 Stories of Power

    November 13, 2014 in Innovation, Space

    With cutting-edge technology, Boeing employees once again are helping build a mighty rocket.

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    Aerospace's largest tool unveiled

    Aerospace's largest tool unveiled

    September 22, 2014 in Space

    Take a ride on the new Space Launch System built by Boeing and ignite your human spirit.

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    Tanks for a great idea

    Tanks for a great idea

    March 18, 2014 in Space, Technology

    Boeing has designed and built two composite liquid-hydrogen fuel tanks for heavy-lift launch vehicles that will propel future air and space missions.

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    Boeing prepares to build the biggest rocket

    Building the Biggest Rocket with the Biggest Tools

    June 28, 2013 in Space

    Boeing has designed and built two composite liquid-hydrogen fuel tanks for heavy-lift launch vehicles that will propel future air and space missions.

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    Space Launch System Customer

    U.S. Flag

    NASA is Boeing's customer for the Space Launch System, the largest rocket ever built, which will take humans and crew well beyond low-Earth orbit and into the reaches of space.

    Space Launch System Quick Facts

    • Designed to be flexible and evolvable for crew or cargo missions
    • Safe, affordable and sustainable to advance America’s exploration of space
    • Two capabilities: 70 metric tons and 130 metric tons of payload capacity
    • The 130 metric tons of capacity would take 22 fully grown elephants into orbit.
    • The 70 metric ton configuration’s engine has 8.4 million pounds of thrust, equal to the horsepower produced in 160,000 Corvette engines, or 13,400 locomotive engines.
    • The 130 metric ton configuration’s engine has 9.2 million pounds of thrust, equal to the horsepower produced in 208,000 Corvette engines, or 17,400 locomotive engines.
    • Each solid rocket booster burns 5 tons of propellant per second.
    • The power generated from four RS-25 engines on the SLS equals the output of 12 Hoover Dams.

    Beyond Earth

    Want to learn more about SLS and its role in Boeing's space exploration plans? Visit BeyondEarth.com for more information.

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