Glenn Research Center Site Index
Glenn Research Center Gallery


The sign near the Ares V model. It reads

Ares V Cargo Launch Vehicle

Model Scale: 1:15

NASA is designing the Ares V cargo launch vehicle to be the "heavy lifter" of America's next-generation space fleet. As part of NASA's Constellation Program to return humans to the Moon, Ares V will serve as NASA's primary launch vehicle for safe, reliable delivery of large-scale hardware to space, such as the Altair lunar lander, and for landing humans on the Moon. Launched in tandem wth Ares I, Ares V will loft Altair into Earth orbit where it will rendezvous and dock with the Orion spacecraft and crew, launched aboard Ares I, for the trip to the Moon.

Standing over 380 feet tall with a liftoff mass of over 8 million pounds, Ares V will be the world's largest and most powerful rocket ever developed. Currently in the early design phase, initial test flights are expected around 2018.

NASA Glenn's Role

The Ares V cargo launch vehicle is being designed by a team of NASA centers and contractors around the country.

NASA Glenn will oversee the design and development of several vital subsystems including the system that steers the vehicle during flight, the electrical power system, development flight instrumentation, and the purge and hazardous gas detection system. Glenn is also contributing to the design of the Ares V upper stage -- the Earth departure stage. In addition, Glenn expects to play a major role in the environmental testing of the Ares V Earth departure stage and its main engine, the J-2X

Glenn's largest Ares V role will be leading the design and development of the payload shroud. This large composite structure at the top of Ares V protects Altair during launch. Once clear of the Earth's atmosphere, the payload shroud will separate from Ares V enabling Altair to dock with Orion in low Earth orbit.

For more information see

Sign accompanying Ares V model on Glenn Research Center grounds
Time picture taken Mon Aug 24 09:39:38 2009
Location picture taken Center Grounds
Glenn Research Center
Cleveland, Ohio
Prev Glenn Research Center Gallery Next