Friday, April 01, 2011

NASA Test Stand Passes Review for Next-Generation Rocket Engine Testing

Forty-five years after its first Saturn V rocket stage test and 35 years after its first space shuttle main engine test, the A-2 Test Stand at NASA’s John C. Stennis Space Center achieved a milestone in preparation for its third major rocket engine test project. A facility readiness review in mid-March indicated all major modifications have been completed on the historic A-2 stand to begin testing the next-generation J-2X rocket engine this summer.

The new test project comes as Stennis celebrates its 50th anniversary year. On Oct. 26, 1961, NASA publicly announced plans to build the south Mississippi facility to test the massive Saturn V rocket stages for the Apollo Program. The first test of a Saturn V second stage at Stennis was performed at the A-2 stand on April 23, 1966. Stennis engineers tested 27 first and second Saturn V rocket stages for the Apollo Program, including those used to carry humans to the moon.

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