Press Release

NASA Marshall Welcomes Super Guppy for Transport of SLS Test Hardware, Media Invited

By SpaceRef Editor
July 10, 2017
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Media are invited to view the Orion Stage Adapter structural test article for NASA’s Space Launch System, as it is loaded into the agency’s Super Guppy aircraft Tuesday, July 11, at Redstone Army Airfield.

The Orion Stage Adapter connects the Space Launch System’s Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage to the Orion Spacecraft. The hardware will be transported to Lockheed Martin in Denver, Colorado, where it will undergo integrated structural testing with the Orion spacecraft. Engineers will conduct a series of tests during the next few months to confirm Orion’s design is structurally sound and ensure the spacecraft is ready for deep-space missions.

Media interested in covering the loading should contact Kim Henry in Marshall’s Office of Communications at 256-544-0034 no later than 8:00 a.m. CDT on Tuesday, July 11. Media must report to the Redstone Arsenal Joint Visitor Control Center at Gate 9, Interstate 565 interchange at Research Park Boulevard by 9:30 a.m. CDT. Reporters will be able to see the OSA test article in a protective wrapping being loaded into the Super Guppy aircraft. Media must wear long pants and closed-toe shoes with heels no higher than two inches. Vehicles are subject to a security search at the gate. Photo identification and proof of car insurance is required.

Vehicles are subject to a security search at the gate. Photo identification and proof of car insurance is required.

The OSA is approximately 5 feet tall and 18 feet in diameter, and was designed and built at Marshall for testing ahead of Orion’s first flight, Exploration Flight Test-1. The test article recently underwent successful integrated structural tests at Marshall, along with the Launch Vehicle Stage Adapter, Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage, frangible joint assembly and two simulators that make up the top of the rocket.

The Super Guppy has a cargo compartment that is 25 feet tall, 25 feet wide and 111 feet long and can carry more than 26 tons. The aircraft has unique hinged nose that can open more than 200 degrees, allowing large pieces of cargo to be loaded and unloaded from the front.

Video resources will be available on NASA’s Video and Imagery Library immediately following the event.

SpaceRef staff editor.