NASA to begin developing Ares rockets

December 17, 2007

The U.S. space agency said it will begin testing core rocket engine components from the Apollo era this month to help build the Ares rocket.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said data from the tests will help scientists build the next generation engine that will power the Ares launch vehicles on voyages that will send humans to the moon.

NASA is testing the Apollo engine's powerpack -- a gas generator and turbo pumps that perform the rocket engine's major pumping and combustion work. Those components originally delivered propellants to the Apollo-era J-2 engine that fueled the second stage of the Saturn V rockets.

"The J-2X engine will incorporate significant upgrades to meet higher thrust and efficiency requirements for Ares," said Mike Kynard, manager of the upper stage engine for the Ares Projects Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

The J-2X is an evolved version of two historic predecessors: the J-2 engine that propelled the Saturn IB and Saturn V rockets, and the J-2S, a simplified version of the J-2 that was developed and tested during the early 1970s.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: Bezos space firm claims reusable rocket breakthrough (Update)

Related Stories

How do astronauts keep fit in space?

November 23, 2015

Imagine being the first human to walk on Mars—for today's youngsters such ambitions could really materialise as humankind steps closer to the next cosmic frontier.

Recommended for you

Getting into the flow on the International Space Station

December 1, 2015

Think about underground water and gas as they filter through porous materials like soil and rock beds. On Earth, gravity forces water and gas to separate as they flow through the ground, cleaning the water and storing it ...

Exiled exoplanet likely kicked out of star's neighborhood

December 1, 2015

A planet discovered last year sitting at an unusually large distance from its star - 16 times farther than Pluto is from the sun - may have been kicked out of its birthplace close to the star in a process similar to what ...

Cassini mission provides insight into Saturn

December 1, 2015

Scientists have found the first direct evidence for explosive releases of energy in Saturn's magnetic bubble using data from the Cassini spacecraft, a joint mission between NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Italian ...

Timing a sextuple quasar

December 1, 2015

Quasars are galaxies with massive black holes at their cores around which vast amounts of energy are being radiated. Indeed, so much light is emitted that the nucleus of a quasar is much brighter than the rest of the entire ...


Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

4 / 5 (2) Dec 17, 2007
Good job NASA... these component tests on a next generation lifter from the Saturn V should have been completed by 1975 - but hey - better late then never
not rated yet Dec 18, 2007
Timidly going where man has gone before.

Today's NASA - Yesterday's technology.

I wonder if the Chinese and Indians will let NASA land on the moon?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.