A $2.8 billion contract for Boeing Co. to build NASA’s next generation rocket is good news for Aerojet Rocketdyne in Chatsworth.
The core stage of the Space Launch System will be powered by four RS-25 engines built by Rocketdyne and based on the design of the main engines on the Space Shuttle. The core stage contains the fuel for the engines and the electronic systems and will be assembled at a NASA facility in New Orleans.
Rocketdyne is also supplying the J-2X engine for the upper stage of the new rocket.
The Space Launch System is the first exploration-class vehicle from NASA since the Saturn V rocket used for the Apollo program. The rocket will carry the manned Orion capsule, cargo, equipment and science experiments.
The first flight is scheduled for 2017, with the first manned flight scheduled for 2021.