Nasa daily picture for March 07: Structural Test Version of the Intertank for NASA's New Deep Space Rocket

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A Structural Test Version of the Intertank for SLS

A structural test version of the intertank for NASA's new deep-space rocket, the Space Launch System, arrives at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center March 4, aboard the barge Pegasus. The intertank is the second piece of structural hardware for the massive SLS core stage built at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans delivered to Marshall for testing. The structural test article will undergo critical testing as engineers push, pull and bend the hardware with millions of pounds of force to ensure it can withstand the forces of launch and ascent.

The test hardware is structurally identical to the flight version of the intertank that will connect the core stage's two colossal fuel tanks, serve as the upper-connection point for the two solid rocket boosters and house critical avionics and electronics. Pegasus, originally used during the Space Shuttle Program, has been redesigned and extended to accommodate the SLS rocket's massive, 212-foot-long core stage -- the backbone of the rocket. The 310-foot-long barge will ferry the flight core stage from Michoud to other NASA centers for tests and launch.

Image Credit: NASA/MSFC/Tyler Martin



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