International Space Agencies – Missions and Discoveries

NASA completes key milestone for most powerful rocket


NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS), will be the most powerful rocket ever built.


  1. The first vehicle designed to meet the challenges of the journey to Mars, has completed all steps needed to clear a critical design review (CDR).
  2. This is the first time in almost 40 years that a NASA human-rated rocket has cleared a CDR.
  3. Review gives confidence that they are on the right track for the first flight of SLS and using it to extend permanent human presence into deep space.
  4. Critical design reviews for the individual SLS elements of the core stage, boosters and engines were completed successfully as part of this milestone.

The CDR demonstrates that the maturity of the design is appropriate to support proceeding with full-scale fabrication, assembly, integration, and test.

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