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NASA With Boeing Developing World's Most Powerful Rocket For Deep Space Travel

Update Date: Jul 06, 2014 04:19 PM EDT

NASA has approved a $2.8 billion contract with Boeing for development of the world's most powerful rocket. The critical design review of the rocket called the Space Launch System(SLS), has already been completed. 

If everything goes as planned, the rocket will take its first flight from Florida's Cape Canaveral in 2017.

The decision to build world's most powerful rocket follows a 2010 decision by President Barack Obama to reassess the nation's extra-planetary ambitions. He had called for ending a manned moon mission known as Constellation in favor of future deep space projects, reported The Space Reporter. 

"Our teams have dedicated themselves to ensuring that the SLS - the largest ever - will be built safely, affordably and on time," Virginia Barnes, Boeing SLS vice president and programme manager said in a statement.

"We are passionate about NASA's mission to explore deep space. It's a very personal mission, as well as a national mandate," said Ms. Barnes.

The new $2.8 billion contract signed July 1 extends through 2021. It includes about $700 million that has already been spent on tooling and other SLS items at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, where the booster will be built and put together before transport to the Kennedy Space Center for launch, reported CBS News.

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