NASA Mega-Rocket Could Lead to Skylab 2 Deep Space Station
by Mike Wall, SPACE.com Senior Writer
Date: 02 April 2013 Time: 07:30 AM ET
The original Skylab space station (left) launched atop a
Saturn V moon rocket. Skylab II (right) would blast off atop NASA's
Space Launch System.
CREDIT: NASA Images
With a little tinkering, the upper-stage hydrogen propellant tank of NASA's huge Space Launch System rocket would make a nice and relatively cheap deep-space habitat, some researchers say. They call the proposed craft "Skylab II," an homage to the 1970s Skylab space station that was a modified third stage of a Saturn V moon rocket.
"This idea is not challenging technology," said Brand Griffin, an engineer with Gray Research, Inc., who works with the Advanced Concepts Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
"It's just trying to say, 'Is this the time to be able to look at existing assets, planned assets and incorporate those into what we have as a destination of getting humans beyond LEO [low-Earth orbit]?'" Griffin said Wednesday (March 27) during a presentation with NASA's Future In-Space Operations working group. [Gallery: Visions of Deep-Space Stations]
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Source: Space.com .
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