The Space Launch System (SLS) is based on the American heavy expendable launch vehicle SLS. It was previously based on the Ares IV and V rockets that were supposed to launch the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle, which was redesigned and became what we know today as the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV).
The cancellation of the Constellation Program and the subsequent restructuring of the program is what led to the design selection by NASA of what would be known as the SLS.
The SLS is aimed at replacing NASA's Space Shuttle because it has been deemed cheaper to manufacture and easier to manage than the aging Shuttle program. Planned uses for it thus far include: launching astronauts to the ISS, returning man to the Moon, and sending interplanetary manned spacecraft to Mars.
The SLS is comprised of:
- The Exploration Upper Stage is a large 2nd stage in real life, but has not been added to the game.
- The SLS prior to 1.5.0 was the white variant of the SLS.
|EM-1||1 Crew||No||June 2020||Scheduled||1 month||Lunar orbit||Send Orion capsule on trip around Moon. Deploy 6 CubeSats|
|EC||1 Cargo||No||2022||Proposed||Jovian orbit||Flagship-class robotic mission to explore Europa|
|EM-2||1 Crew||Yes (4)||June 2022||Scheduled||8-21 days||Lunar flyby||First crewed Orion capsule|
|EM-3||1B Crew||Yes (4)||2023||Planned||16-26 days||Lunar halo orbit||Deliver Deep Space Habitat (DSH) module to the Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway (LOP-G)|
|EM-4||1B Crew||Yes (4)||2025||Planned||26-42 days||Lunar orbit||Deliver logistics to LOP-G|
|EM-5||1B Crew||Yes (4)||2026||Planned||26-42 days||Lunar orbit||Deliver airlock module to LOP-G|
|EM-6||1B Cargo||No||2027||Planned||Lunar orbit||Deliver Deep Space Transport (DST) vehicle to LOP-G|
|EM-7||1B Crew||Yes (4)||2027||Planned||191-221 days||Lunar orbit||DST checkout|
|EM-8||1B Cargo||No||2028||Planned||Lunar orbit||DST cargo logistics refuelling|
|EM-9||2 Crew||Yes (4)||2029||Planned||1 year||Lunar orbit||DST long-duration test|
|EM-10||2 Cargo||No||2030||Planned||Lunar orbit||DST cargo logistics refuelling|
|EM-11||2 Crew||Yes (4)||2033||Planned||2 years||Mars orbit||Interplanetary flight|